Tuesday, April 15, 2014


 Becoming a successful screen or television writer is not as hard as you think it is.
"WHAT?" you are yelling.  That's right it's not too difficult.  Just follow some simple rules and grab the brass ring.  Here are a few of the rules and some advice from someone who has lived it (me):

STOP asking for an agent and START becoming a better writer.  Learning how to write a good script takes years.  You are often putting the cart before the horse by writing to me and to so many others in the Biz wherein you express your readiness for representation.

You aren't ready! Have you taken writing classes by really good teachers?  Have you read David Trottier, Michael Hauge, Blake Snyder and Linda Seger?  Have you hired a professional consultant to give you notes on your latest project?  Have you written five to ten original screenplays?  That's right, original.  No true stories, no adaptations of books or plays.  

Agents, managers and producers are looking for people who can write a basic story with interesting characters.  They want strong male leads who are in every scene of the film
They don't want you to direct the actors or to describe every scene, movement, weather report, colors, ages and looks of supporting characters, noises, who's sitting where, etc.

Every single time I consult on a project, I must edit out all  of the above.  You aren't writing a shooting script.  You are writing a spec.  It's different.

Have you spent time learning about the Biz of being a writer??  Have you spent time with professional writers?  Look around....they are often writing teachers in your area who have retired and now teach at local colleges.

Do you know how to be a good client of an agent or manager?  Do you know what will transpire if you are lucky enough to get a meeting with a development person or producer or studio executive?

If you want to know these things and much more, read my book:  MIND YOUR BUSINESS: A Hollywood Literary Agent's Guide to Your Writing Career".  I wrote this book to help YOU.  (www.amazon.com, book nook, book stores, etc.)

Here's a review by professional writer Alex Epstein:

    "It's about time an agent wrote a screenwriting book. In her book MIND YOUR BUSINESS, veteran lit agent Michele Wallerstein gives you a perspective another writer won't. What is an agent looking for in a script? How do you score in a meeting? How do you handle your side of a negotiation? How can you tell when your agent isn't into you anymore?
     Many good writers put all their efforts into their scripts. But a brilliant writer can screw up his own career by what he does or doesn't do. Minding your business -- and agenting your agent -- is almost as important as your screenwriting craft.
     When I was starting out, Ms. Wallerstein was one of the agents people recommended I contact. She really knows her stuff. Check it out." –